How Long Does Smoked Meat Last? - The Longevity of Smoked Meats

How Long Does Smoked Meat Last? – The Longevity of Smoked Meats

From very ancient times, food is being preserved by using many unique methods. Smoking meat and keeping them for a long time is one of them. This technic doesn't only preserve food but also enhances its taste.

Though preserving food using the smoking method is an ancient technique; however, at present, it is still efficient in many cases. Moreover, the smoky flavor that the meat gets via this method is delicious.

If we are living outdoor and don't have access to a refrigerator, then this method comes in handy. The smoking technique helps to store the food for about 4-5 days only if the process is followed correctly.

Most of the time, the smoking method is used while camping or traveling.


Why Do We Need to Preserve Meat by Smoking?

For thousands of years, we are storing our meat by smoking them properly. Back at that time, refrigerators were not introduced for preservation.

Even without keeping the meal in cold storage, we were able to preserve meat for at least 4-5 days with the help of the smoking method. At that time, this Technic was a godsend to general people for food preservation.

Preserving smoked meat is very easy to conduct; it's less time consuming, and also less expensive than other ways of storing meat.

One of the advantages of storing meat by smoking is that it can bring out a different flavor in our food. If the process of preservation is followed appropriately, the taste becomes exquisite and lasts for a long time.

The smoky, woody, and a mix of charcoal flavor in the meal is what we can get because of this method. It enhances the quality and texture of our meal.

The Process of Storing Meat

We always need to follow some necessary steps while working so we get our desired output. If you want to preserve your beef for a longer duration, you will need to follow the methods given below strictly.

• Removing Extra Water

Before we start to cook our meat, we need to remove all the extra water from it. The excess water may become a hurdle when we cook. It ruins the texture of the food and also doesn't allow the meat to last long.

• Deciding on the Tools and Methods

We need to choose the appropriate appliance or way of smoking our meal. We also need to make sure that we know the method of using proper tools.

• Cooking the Meat

An essential thing about preserving meat is that we need to cook it properly; otherwise, it might get spoiled even before we can store it. When we apply heat to our food, it destroys the bacteria in it.

That's why if we don't cook at an appropriate temperature, we will fail to preserve our food.

• Avoiding Freezer Burn

We need to wrap the meat properly with a plastic wrap or a butcher paper so that we can save it from freezer burn.

Wrapping up the meat also helps you to keep them separated from other meats.

Because of this we can easily take them out and use them as per our convenience.

• Sealing the Flavor

After the meat is wrapped in a butcher paper, we need to cover that again with a foil paper. This prevents the juicy taste to come out of the flesh and seals in the flavor.

Tools Used in Storing Smoked Meat

Along with knowing the advantages and edible lifespan of smoked meats, we also need to get introduced to the equipment, which helps with the process of preservation.

First of all, we need to assemble all the tools for storing. Afterward, we need to know their usage to utilize them in an orderly manner.


Using the right tool for cooking is a crucial element for food preservation. For the method mentioned above, we can use various kinds of cooking appliances. However, we must first decide which one we should use to preserve our meat correctly.

• Infrared Grill

The infrared grill is the most common device for storing meat with the smoking process. It is the most advanced and available appliance for this Technic.

The most important facility of this kit is that we can control the temperature of this device as per our liking and cook the meal without any worry of burning them.

Another thing is that we can use many types of fuel for cooking in the grill. We can run it with any available energy without any hassle.

It's also easy to clean and lasts for a long time. It has a self-cleaning function. If we fix the temperature of this device to maximum after our work is done, it will burn all the leftover food on it and will get cleaned.

The temperature control function ensures that it doesn't waste any extra fuel, which not only preserves natural energy but also saves our money.

Nevertheless, it cooks the food evenly and adequately.

• Gas Grill

It's not like we can only use gas in a gas grill. We can also use charcoal in it to cook meat.

Gas grill is an authentic and old device that is used for cooking and preserving food by smoking. In the earlier days, the machine was trendy due to its authenticity. On most outdoor occasions, people prefer using this device.

The product is less expensive to purchase in comparison to an infrared grill. Additionally, it is less complicated than other high-tech devices. That is the reason why most people still prefer using this product.

It surely doesn't contain a variety of facilities as an infrared grill does; however, you can still get the job done efficiently.

• The Big Green Egg

This particular device is a bit more complicated than the other machines. We need to use this cautiously if we don't want the equipment inside of it to break.

However, the result it gives after all the hard work is commendable.

It can give us well-cooked smoky meat that we can easily preserve for 4-5 days. Usually, we use charcoal for cooking in this appliance.

Nevertheless, it produces a lot of ash, but still, without a doubt, it is one of the best items for smoking meat.

Heat Sources

When we smoke the meat to store them, we need some fuel or energy to produce the heat for the process. Depending on your convenience and flavor, you should choose the way you want to heat your grill.

• Charcoal

From ancient times, charcoal is being used to smoke and store meat. The earthy and coal flavor that this fuel gives to the meal is remarkable.

Charcoal is readily available and preferable to use. It helps to produce the needed heat to smoke the meat evenly. We can use them in appliances such as infrared grill, traditional grill, earthen pot, big green egg, etc.

• Gas

Gas is a natural fuel. We use this to cook food in modern devices. The machines in which gas is used are usually controllable. It's very convenient to use gas as fuel to get a well-cooked meal.

• Electricity

This particular energy is used for cooking or preserving food in modern times. Most of the time, we see electricity is being used in an electric grill. It can give the user a precisely cooked meal. 

The advantage of using electricity is that it's reproducible, not very expensive, and very easy to use.

• Wood

Most of the time, we do not prefer to carry huge baggage with us whenever we go on a campsite or go for traveling in any rural area. In that case, taking a cooking appliance is out of the question.

We can always find some wood in those places and use them for our aid. Wood is very flammable if they are dry. The heat produced from them can help us to cook our meat and also store them for later use.


After working very hard to prepare and wrap the meat properly, it's necessary to carry them in appropriate packaging. We need to take them in a package which can save it from direct sunlight or humidity.

Other Essential Tools

To conduct the process of storing meat in the smoking method, we need some additional tools. These devices are not used only to cook or preserve the meat. They are also used afterward.

We need gloves to secure our hands from being burnt, apron so that we can save our clothes and also our bodies. We also need grill cleaner, rug, water, and even a brush to remove the ashes.

Till When Having This Smoky Meat Is Safe?

Sometimes, preserving meat using the smoking method is very time consuming, and also it needs a lot of hard work. But all these will go in vain if we don't use them or eat them before they get rotten.

Before we use the meat, we need to check if the food has an odd smell or if it's slimy. If it has any of the attributes, it will be wise to throw it away.

The meats that are preserved by the smoking method stay in good condition until 4-5 days of their prep. It may cause some serious harm if they are eaten afterward.

We need to keep a thing in our mind that if we consume the meat after a very long time, they may cause food poisoning or severe stomach issues.

To avoid any of these circumstances, we should keep a count on the time of their making and their expiry date.

Why Do We Need to Preserve Meat by Smoking

What Are the Safety Measures That We Need to Follow in This Procedure?

Food is essential for our living. If we neglect the necessary safety measures, it might be very harmful to our health.

When we cook food most of the time, we use heat. That's why we need to be cautious while working and also while consuming food.

  • We need to wash the tools that are being used in the process regularly.
  • If we have already cooked some rotten meat in the grill by mistake, we need to clean that up; otherwise, bacteria that are present there might contaminate our meal.
  • Always wear hand gloves and apron when working with fire.
  • We need to know the temperature in which the meat is being cooked as all the meat doesn't get prepared at the same temperature.
  • Use a thermometer to check out the temperature if we don't have the option of controlling the heat.
  • We should always carry a first aid kit. However, if we get burned, cold water or ice might come in handy.

Conclusion: Many people assume that smoky food lasts longer than dried or frozen food. The assumption is not correct. The duration of food preserved by using the smoking technique is very less in comparison to the other methods.

However, if there is no other option except for the smoking method, you should do it in the proper way.

According to some researchers and health instructors, we should eat foods that are freshly cooked. The texture and taste we can get from the meal will be far much higher than the ones that are stored for a long time.

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Theresa Lori

Hi, I'm Theresa. My passion for grilling delicacy gradually built during the time I was living with my parents. My family members especially my mother was a great fan of grilled dishes to and from the love of food. I started preparing smoked food with my mom. This bonding helped me to know more and more about to smoke, grill what always I share on So, in two words you can call me a BBQ lover.

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